Posted : 2014-07-09 17:54
Updated : 2014-07-09 21:59

More King Sejong Institutes to open

Students laugh during a Korean class at a Sejong Institute in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. / Courtesy of Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism

By Kwon Mee-yoo

Korea has expanded facilities for overseas Korean language education to respond to a growing demand. New King Sejong Institutes will open in 17 cities, the culture ministry said Wednesday.

The new locations include Iowa City and Honolulu in the United States; Changsha, Linyi, Hohhot in China; Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Monterrey in Mexico; Waterloo, Canada and Ulan-Ude, Russia. Additional facilities are mostly located in Asia, as nine of the new institutes will be founded in Asia, six in America and two in Europe.

"These locations needed Korean language institutions with increased Korean business presence and ‘hallyu,' or Korean wave, boosting interest in learning Korean language and culture," the culture ministry said in a statement.

This brings the total number of the institutes, located within Korean culture centers or universities with Korea studies program, up to 130.

The institutes in Nagoya, Japan and Taipei, Taiwan will be run as part of a strategic cooperation between the King Sejong Institute Foundation and the Korea Tourism Organization.

In San Jose, Costa Rica, the Sejong Institute will be operated in cooperation with the Information Access Center of National Technical University, which was built by Korea's National Information Society Agency.

The King Sejong Institute is named after the fourth king of the Joseon Kingdom (1392-1910), who created Hangeul, or the Korean alphabet. Established during the Roh Moo-hyun administration, the program has provide integrated service for Korean language education in over 100 countries.

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관련 한글 기사

세종학당 17개소 신규 지정…130개소로 확대

미국 아이오와시티와 중국 창사 등에 새롭게 세종학당이 만들어졌다.

문화체육관광부와 세종학당재단은 아시아 9개소, 미주 6개소, 유럽 2개소 등 총 17개소의 세종학당을 새롭게 지정했다고 9일 밝혔다.

세종학당이 신설된 곳은 아이오와시티, 창사를 비롯해 과테말라 과테말라시티, 러시아 울란우데, 리투아니아 빌뉴스, 멕시코 몬테레이, 미국 호놀룰루 등이다.

베트남 호찌민, 인도 파트나, 일본 사가미하라·나고야, 중국 린이·후허하오터, 대만 타이베이, 캄보디아 시엠레아프, 캐나다 워털루, 코스타리카 산호세 등에도 세종학당이 설치됐다.

문체부는 '이번에 지정된 지역은 한류 확산 및 한국기업 해외 진출 등의 영향으로 한국어 학습 수요가 증가해 그동안 세종학당 설치가 절실했던 곳'이라며 '이로써 세종학당은 총 130개소로 확대됐다'고 설명했다.

특히 나고야, 타이베이, 산호세의 세종학당은 공공기관 간 전략적 협업 추진을 통해 지정됐다.

한국관광공사와 협력한 나고야와 타이베이 세종학당은 한국 문화 체험 및 관광 정보 제공 공간인 '코리아플라자'에 자리잡고 있다. 한국정보화진흥원의 코스타리카 국립기술대 내 정보접근센터(IAC)도 세종학당 역할을 하게 된다. (연합뉴스)

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